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Rocky Mountain High: After 6 Months, Crime Down, Tax Revenue Up In Colorado

Six months after Colorado became the first state to sanction the legal sale of recreational marijuana, it is nearly $11 million richer in retail sales taxes.

The state also has another $1.9 million in excise taxes earmarked for school construction, according to a report card by the Drug Policy Alliance.

The organization also reports a 5.2 percent decrease in violent crime in Denver, where most marijuana stores are located, and a savings of $12 million to $40 million by years’ end for not having to enforce old marijuana possession laws.

The report also cites the Marijuana Industry Group’s estimation that 10,000 people are directly employed by the legal pot industry and quotes Gov. John Hickenlooper — who opposed the passage of Amendment 64, which legalized sale and possession for adults — saying, “While the rest of the country’s economy is slowly picking back up, we’re thriving here in Colorado.”

And just recently, regulators with the state Marijuana Enforcement Division announced that all marijuana stores inspected for compliance in not selling pot to minors passed the test. (RELATED: Colorado Pot Shops Pass ‘No-Kids’ Test With Flying Colors)

“I think so many things people were scared about have been shown to be nonsense,” Michael Elliot, executive director of the Marijuana Industry Group, told Denver’s 7News.


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